December 10, 2010

LEADERS OF THE DEMOCRATIC OPPOSITION:

The Brotherhood's next move: What will be the Brotherhood's tactics now it is no longer represented in parliament (Dina Ezzat, 12/08/10, Al-Ahram)

The Muslim Brotherhood's charities, media channels and religion-related activities will continue to link them with the public.

"The Muslim Brotherhood is not just a political party, it is a movement that has been active and survived rounds of persecution under both the monarchy and republic," says political analyst Mustafa Kamel El-Sayed. It is, he says, a mistake to assume the group will disappear from the public arena because its road to parliamentary representation was blocked.

"To the Muslim Brotherhood, parliament is just one of many political and social venues used to promote their political agenda. It is one aspect of a complex apparatus." [...].

According to both observers and members of the Muslim Brotherhood, the group will probably now attempt to coordinate with other political forces.

El-Sayed and El-Erian suggest the possible creation of a new opposition front gathering political forces -- including the Muslim Brotherhood and the secular parties -- along with social groups such as the Egyptian Movement for Change.

Working with El-Baradei is an option, said El-Erian, adding that for El-Baradei to secure mass support from the Muslim Brotherhood or any other political bloc he "needs to start working on a coherent project" for reform that goes beyond simply calling on society to act to induce it.

It is very much an open question whether El-Baradei will pursue such a course. Yet with or without El-Baradei, El-Erian and Hassan insist, the Muslim Brotherhood will seek to coordinate positions with other political forces, given that most of the opposition has been excluded from the new parliament in elections that many rights groups say were marred by extensive irregularities.

According to El-Erian, the message of the Muslim Brotherhood to the opposition forces is short, simple and to the point: "We are all in one boat."

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Posted by Orrin Judd at December 10, 2010 12:19 AM
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